To create a compelling presentation, it is essential to first consider the elements that make a story come to life. When elements of the story are not present, it can be difficult to stay focused. For example, imagine this: it’s 4pm and you’re about to join another Zoom call. When the host lets you in, they immediately start sharing the screen and you already feel like you’re starting to lose focus.
In the virtual age, attendees can get distracted and get tired of looking at a screen all day long. According to Global Newswire, 49% reported a high degree of exhaustion due to numerous daily video calls. As a result, we are constantly struggling to keep our audience’s attention, whether in a master class or a team meeting.
There is a solution to ensure truly dynamic and compelling presentations. Let’s see how you can further update your meetings, presentations, and video calls with these three story elements, which I like to remember as “CAR”:
When you first think about creating your presentation, it may seem like an overwhelming feat. Of course, you want your presentation to be well-designed to keep your attendees captivated. However, you don’t have to have a design team or even a professional graphic designer to be creative. What’s most impactful about audience interaction and attention is yours delivery.
An example of this is the CEO of Skill Scout Films, Elena Valentine. During his lecture at a marketing summit, he began his presentation with a slam poem. He used this to illustrate his journey towards public speaking, conveying his style of presentation presentation.
This links directly to being a true presenter. When you share stories from your own personal experience, you are showing your audience that you trust them. In addition, it makes both the presenter and the attendees feel more connected.
Vanessa Van Edwards, best-selling author and keynote speaker, shares a picture of childhood to kick off her TED talk on body language. Mocking herself, her assistants immediately clung to what she was saying.
By weaving a story throughout the presentation, you can constantly refer to it throughout the presentation. In addition, a general theme makes it easier for your audience to follow and keep up to date with your story.
One of my favorite stories that really encompasses all “CAR” is from my manager Lorraine, who talks about her trip to public speaking.
She talks about how it was a ball of nerves to even think about public speaking. But after continuing to sign up for conference concerts, she now has regular conference engagements and has been named one of the leading virtual speakers.
In its history, it incorporates these three elements:
- Creativity: Use cropped graphics and simple GIFs that allow us to follow her as she prepares to go to the Empire State Building for a camera interview.
- Authenticity: She is also vulnerable with the public when sharing a personal story.
- Relevance: Finally, it incorporates relevance because, at one time or another, most people have felt a level of uncertainty and nervousness before speaking in public. Lorraine also shares how to be more confident and competent in video sharing how far she has come in her public speaking journey.
When we meet virtually, our attendees are limited to seeing only the upper half of our body. And if you share the screen, they’ll only see you in a small box. If we incorporate these three elements into our meetings and presentations, we can make connections with our attendees and keep them captivated at all times.
Beyond the Keynote
Video conferencing fatigue has fallen on the workforce due to the shift to remote and hybrid work. We’ve seen that video meeting is not the same as face-to-face meeting. We need to work harder to understand the non-verbal communication of the other attendees. When you’re at meetings, attendees usually have their microphones turned off, which can make you feel like you’re talking to yourself. Having to look at the camera can also be very exhausting and make you focus more on yourself than on your audience.
Needless to say, it’s crucial to overcome the fatigue of video conferencing by making your meetings more interactive and engaging, you’ve guessed it, weaving a story into it.
Shivani Berry, CEO and founder of Ascend Women’s Leadership Program, recently shared a LinkedIn post explaining how to get your team supported and invested in your ideas, which can also be applied to interviews with work and your career.
She recommends using stories to get people to trust your ideas and what you talk about through the AIM framework.
- Audience: You want to understand what your audience cares about and what they want to know
- Intention: The way you structure your story, based on your ultimate goal.
- Message: What is the key point you are trying to convey?
If you wanted to implement this framework for a job interview, here’s how you can structure it: Your audience is probably made up of the interviewer and the team you want to join.
Suppose they want to know how you can be a strong asset to their business. Your intent as a candidate is to structure your answers around what you want to contribute to the business.
This is your chance to really sell your experiences. Finally, the message you are sharing should answer this question: “How will my experiences / stories show that I will be a great addition to the company?”
The next time you create a presentation, preparing for an interview or meeting, find a way to incorporate a story. This will ensure that your attendees will be attentive to your presentation.
Image Credit: RODNAE Productions; pexels; Thanks!
Video Credit: Naba Ahmed; Prices; Thanks!
Gif Credit: Lorraine Lee; Prices; Thanks!
The publication 3 Essential Elements of History to Create a Solid Presentation first appeared on Calendar.